Ruggero Laganà was born in Milan in 1956, and completed his musical education there with brilliant grades in composition (under Franco Donatoni and Sandro Gorli), piano and Harpsichord.
His activity as a composer is complemented by that of a concert artist, for Laganà is in fact among Italy’s most acclaimed exponents of the fortepiano and harpsichord. In 1987, in addition to winning the Concorso Cembalistico of Bologna and the Rome International Competition, he also won a Special Mention at the Paris International Competition for performance of contemporary harpsichord works, conferred by an international jury including Gustav Leonhardt, H. Dreyfus and Veyron-Lacroix, among others. He has composed several works for solo harpsichord, for harpsichord and chamber orchestra, and for harpsichord and orchestra (Les Grandes Guirlandes, winner of the RAI-Scarlatti Prize in 1985).
Les petites Guirlandes was selected as the obligatory piece for the Paris International Harpsichord Competition in 1989, with Laganà a member of the jury.
Alongside his intense commitment to performance, Laganà has resumed his activity as a composer after a few years’ pause, with works including Voli for cello and piano, Vele for wind octet, and incidental music for important Milanese stage productions and the one-act opera Die Traumenden Knaben on a libretto by O. Kokoschka, for two narrators, soprano, four instruments and live electronics. The opera was premièred at the Piccolo Teatro of Milan in December 1991 and broadcast on the radio last May. In 1977 and 1979, Laganà won second and first prize, respectively, in the City of Varese International Composition Competition. In 1978 he won the competition organized by the Province of Milan for the “Musica del Nostro Tempo” concert series as well as the Aterforum-RAI 3 competition.
In 1979 he also won the V. Bucchi prize, in 1981 the Competition for Choral Composition organized by RAI-Anfim; in 1982 the Guggenheim Music Prize with Goffredo Petrassi, a Viotti award in 1984 and the RAI-Scarlatti Prize in 1986.
His music has been performed in the most important reviews and in the most prestigious European festivals of contemporary music, including the Venice Biennale, Settembre Musica in Turin, the Festival Pontino, Musica del Nostro Tempo in Milan, Nuova Consonanza in Rome, and the Lille, Orléans, Avignon and Paris festivals, as well as in Berlin, Salzburg, Vienna, Montreal, Tokyo, Kyoto and New York.
His first opera, a one-act work entitled Trottola, or The Enchantments of the Market, for soprano, mezzo soprano, basso buffo, choir and orchestra, received its première at Milan’s Piccola Scala in 1982. All his music is published by Suvini Zerboni of Milan. Mr. Laganà teaches at the Giuseppe Verdi Conservatory of Milan.